This time of year people like to buy gifts that are fun, and often consider a book that is funny a go-to item for the person they may not know so well, or, perhaps, the person they do -- like a brother or sister. Humor books also make good stocking stuffers.
Finally, for those who take humor seriously, there's the new fifth edition of the Oxford Dictionary of Humorous Quotations (35.00). "A difference of taste in jokes is a great strain on the affections" -- George Eliot. RH
This year we seem to have a better selection than usual. Two have been tickling our bestseller list for weeks now -- Everything I Need to Know I Learned from a Little Golden Book (9.95), which uses art from your old favorite Golden Books and is a bona fide Golden Book (it has the little gold band on the spine); the other is actually a sort of useful, modern-day etiquette book that has a funny title, How Not to be a Dick (16.99), with Dick-and-Jane-ish drawings.
Married folks will find something to laugh about for sure in The Married Kama Sutra: The World's Least Erotic Sex Manual (16.00, illustrated) by Simon Rich and Farley Katch. "When the man is loading the dishwasher and the woman must come over because he is loading it wrong, it is called 'the dishwasher position'." And, after Christmas dinner, families can sit around laughing over Awkward Family Holiday Photos (15.00).
"Trattoria Amazonia" and "The Royal and Ancient Galapogolf" are just two of the illustrated chapters by David Letterman and Bruce McCall in This Land Was Made for You and Me (But Mostly Me) (25.95), who poke fun at how the planet is the playground of the filthy rich, an excellent gift for anyone who isn't, though no one will laugh louder than those who are. We just received "the autobiography every true American has been waiting for: a shockingly candid and raw confessional from a national treasure" -- by Ron Burgundy, entitled Let Me Off at the Top! My Classy Life and Other Musings (22.00). Ron's book jacket carries his own blurb: "I wrote a hell of a book!" with a large picture of his handsome, mustachioed face and anchorman smirk.